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Stripe Hires Thrive Capital's Will Gaybrick as First CFO

Gaybrick is one of Stripe's venture investors and has a software engineering background.

Jason Del Rey has been a business journalist for 15 years and has covered Amazon, Walmart, and the e-commerce industry for the last decade. He was a senior correspondent at Vox.

Stripe appointed Will Gaybrick, one of its venture investors with a software engineering background, as its first chief financial officer.

Though Gaybrick’s background appears unusual for a CFO role, CEO Patrick Collison said his payments company looked for someone with a deep understanding of Stripe’s products. That meant filling the role with a candidate with a strong software engineering background and some financial experience.

“It’s much more operationally key just because [we] are moving so much money every day,” Collison said.

As a result, Collison wanted someone leading the company’s 15-person finance organization who understood how decisions would impact the products the company makes for the developers and merchants who use its service to accept online payments. Gaybrick has gotten to know Stripe’s business well in the 10 months since his former employer, Thrive Capital, led an investment in Stripe.

Gaybrick had been at Thrive since 2011, where he was a general partner. He was previously a software engineer at startups including Jumo and Hunch, and also has a law degree. Gaybrick spent a year at Blackstone as an analyst at the start of his career.

The hire comes at a time when Stripe is growing rapidly, processing billions of dollars a year in payments and trying to build new products to spur new areas of online commerce. But Collison said the hire does not indicate any thoughts of an imminent IPO.

“There’s a pattern of a CFO joining tech companies to chaperone through the IPO process and this is not that,” Collison said. “I hope some day in the future we are working with Will through whatever liquidity mechanism or mechanisms the company pursues. But that’s absolutely not the focus today. That’s years out in the future.”

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